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Third edition of the Contemporary Art Auction


Happy Childhood Foundation Lebanon is organizing the third edition of the Contemporary Art Auction. Amira Rizk, president of the foundation talks to Agenda Culturel. 

What is The Happy Childhood Foundation Lebanon ?
The Happy Childhood Foundation- Lebanon (HCF-Lebanon), originally the Philippe Hatem Foundation for a Happy Childhood, was founded in 2010 after the tragic fatal accident of the young Phillippe Hatem at age 11. As sometimes is the case, such tragedies lead the family to want to turn evil into good, in the memory of the deceased, and hence this Foundation was created. HCF, Lebanon takes care of children in the country, without any discrimination, in the field of basic needs, protection, health, education and recreation. To date, thousands of children have received support and care by the Foundation. Our flagship project is the Laetitia Hatem Rehabilitation Center (LHRC), in Hôtel-Dieu de France, which we built in 2012 with the technical support of the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC), ranked the #1 rehabilitation hospital in the USA for more than 2 decades. In 2018, about 10,000 physical, occupational and speech therapy sessions were provided to 165 children in need. Our care is holistic as it focuses on the physiological, psychological, emotional and intellectual rehabilitation of the children. LHRC has now become a center of rehabilitation excellence in the entire region. 

Why are you organizing an Art auction ? 
We organize a Contemporary Art Auction every two years as our main sources of funds, the other sources being gala dinners and private donations. We started by including small auctions in our galas but wanted to differentiate ourselves from other NGOs by organizing stand-alone auctions. Our first edition was a real success, which earned us a congratulations letter from our supporting auction house, affirming that it was an example of how fundraising auctions should be run. This success encouraged us to organize the subsequent auctions and make it a biennial event.

Tell us more about this third edition.
After the success of the first two Contemporary Art Auctions, this 3rd edition has drawn more high caliber institutions, galleries, artists and individuals, leading it to an even higher dimension. We have UBS Switzerland AG as main sponsor, Sotheby’s London as supporting auction and world-famous galleries and artists participating. In addition, we formed an advisory board for the auction, with selected art experts from the region, to help in establishing the strategy of the event, and in the various contacts needed. 

Who are the artists and galleries participating? How did you proceed for the selection ? 
The galleries and artists participating are among the most important from the Middle East, Europe and the USA, most of them having exhibited in major museums worldwide, like Julian Schnabel lately in Musée d’Orsay and Jeff Elrod in MOMA. Our main partner gallery is Vito Schnabel. The others are Almine Rech, David Zwirner, Tanit, Lehmann Maupin, Mashrabia and Xavier Hufkens.

The artists are :
Ziad Antar - John Armleder – Assadour - Zena Assi - Lara Baladi - Katherine Bernhardt - Michael Biberstein - McArthur Binion - Jean Boghossian - Brian Calvin - Jeff Elrod - Adel El Siwi - Samia Halaby - Rashid Johnson - Lamia Joreige - Aram Jughian - Nadim Karam - David Kramer - Raymond Pettibon - Tom Sachs - Julian Schnabel




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